GREENEVILLE, Tenn. --- Cassie Born recorded 16 kills, while Shannon Murphy finished with 46 assists and 10 digs in Tusculum's 3-0 South Atlantic Conference volleyball sweep over Lenoir-Rhyne Friday night at Pioneer Arena.
The Pioneers (13-9, 8-4 SAC) won the match by scores of 25-22, 25-22, 25-13 to avenge last month's 3-0 loss to the Bears (8-9, 4-7 SAC) and remain fourth in the league standings.
Murphy's 46 assists are tied for the third-most in program history in a three-set match, while also recording her 2,000th career assist, becoming only the sixth Pioneer to achieve the milestone.
Junior libero Melissa Mazur tallied 23 digs in return to the TC line-up after five-match absence due to injury.
Tusculum finished the match with 51 kills which are tied for the 10th-most in Tusculum history (3-set match). The Pioneers posted a .254 hitting percentage including .311 in the final two sets combined.
In the first set, Tusculum trailed late 20-18 following back-to-back TC hitting errors. After Pioneer timeout, Tusculum went on a 4-1 run to take a 23-21 lead. L-R cut the deficit to one at 23-22, but a Schleuger kill and blocks from Laryssa Welch and Murphy on set point gave the Pioneers a 25-22 win. Tusculum finished the set with five blocks.
Born was on fire in the second frame as she had eight kills on 10 error-less attempts to hit .800 as the Pioneers won 25-22. Tusculum hit for .262 in the set as the Black and Orange posted 17 kills in the frame. Trailing 6-5 early, the Pioneers went on a 9-2 run including seven straight points to move out to a 14-8 lead. TC led by as many as 17-10 before the Bears made a run to cut the deficit to 18-16 following an Emily Steele kill. L-R trimmed the TC lead to 21-20 after a Brooke Redmond kill. But the Pioneers got consecutive kills from Born, including one for set-point. TC continued its sizzling blocking as the Pioneers had four rejections in the set.
Tusculum put the match away in third set using a 9-2 run as the Pioneers hit for a sizzling .354 with 19 kills, two errors and 48 attempts. Schleuger led the charge with six kills, while Born had four kills in the final set.
Redmond led the Bears with eight kills and 14 digs, while Ashley Markland had 16 digs in the loss.
Friday's match was Tusculum's Digs for Kids Night as the Pioneers and Bears combined for 107 digs for the match with proceeds going towards the Niswonger Children's Hospital.
Tusculum returns to action on Saturday when they host Catawba for homecoming starting at 12:30 p.m.